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  1. #1

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    Experiences with the Fomabrom graded fibre base papers?

    Browsing on the Ag Photographic site I notice the Fomabrom graded papers; any experiences or interesting qualities with these papers?

    Tom

  2. #2
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    Don't know about the graded but I bought some FB multi contrast Variant 111 from Matt last year and it's superb, but the emulsion is softer tahn most papers, quite unusual and it can scratch easily. It's a very warm toned paper.

    Ian

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    Ian,

    I found that some of the Foma papers need very careful handling and don't appreciate being left to soak in the archival washer for a couple of hours break.

    Tom

  4. #4
    ROL
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    I began using FomaBrom Graded Glossy 111 late last year as a substitute for discontinued papers on selected images:

    Low Water, South Fork Kings River
    Afternoon, 1000 Island Lake

    These are my observations:

    • They are fine papers overall.
    • They are inexpensive.
    • They are neutral in tone, not cold as I normally prefer.
    • They are HARD contrast papers. This is the realistic grading as I have experienced it:
      • SP Special (2) --> 3
      • N Normal (3) --> 4
      • C Hard (4) --> 5+ (almost lith-like)
    • They are thin and NOT double weight as I have come to know it - more like single plus weight. When wetted, whatever is underneath can make the image somewhat translucent where silver is absent. Because of this, presentation (when dry) can be problematic if not backed by white matting. This may also be the cause of your washing issues, which I have not experienced as I have ceased washing longer than an hour on any of the "new" papers to come out over the past few years.
    • A normal yellow-ish safelight is adequate for normal printing times less than 10 minutes.
    • Printing speeds are about average with other papers.
    • They are probably better suited to portraiture than landscapes, as I interpret them.
    • They are Czech.

  5. #5
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    What developer, time/temperature are you using to get such high contrasts from each grade ?

    Ian

  6. #6
    ROL
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Grant View Post
    What developer, time/temperature are you using to get such high contrasts from each grade ?

    Ian
    Dektol (1:2), 2 1/2 minutes / 20 C.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ROL View Post
    ...They are HARD contrast papers. This is the realistic grading as I have experienced it:
    • SP Special (2) --> 3
    • N Normal (3) --> 4
    • C Hard (4) --> 5+ (almost lith-like)
    ...
    To be honest, I haven't used these graded papers, but their VC ones in both RC and FB. Now, the strange thing is that if you have a look at the ISO Paper Ranges quoted in the datasheet and compare them to the ones of Ilford MG IV FB, you'll notice that Fomabrom Special, Normal and Hard are equal to grade 2, 3, 4 of MG IV FB respectively (100, 80, 60).

  8. #8
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    OK, a fairly contrasty, cold working, developer. Kodak's own words "A High Contrast rapid dish developer". Also Kodak later recommend 1 - 1½ mins for developing papers at 1+2 @20°C, again emphasising the contrast.

    Dektol (D72) was designed as a film developer, later becoming Kodaks main paper developer.

    So try the Foma paper with a European paper developer/formula and the contrast will be more normal.

    Ian

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Grant View Post
    OK, a fairly contrasty, cold working, developer. Kodak's own words "A High Contrast rapid dish developer". Also Kodak later recommend 1 - 1½ mins for developing papers at 1+2 @20°C, again emphasising the contrast.

    Dektol (D72) was designed as a film developer, later becoming Kodaks main paper developer.

    So try the Foma paper with a European paper developer/formula and the contrast will be more normal.

    Ian
    Richard J Henry suggests D-72 1+1 as a good general standard, but I have found lower contrast options helpful when printing on Ilfobrom Galerie. Whats' your view on contrast control via developer with variable contrast papers?

    Tom

  10. #10
    ROL
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ian Grant View Post
    OK, a fairly contrasty, cold working, developer. Kodak's own words "A High Contrast rapid dish developer". Also Kodak later recommend 1 - 1½ mins for developing papers at 1+2 @20°C, again emphasising the contrast.

    Dektol (D72) was designed as a film developer, later becoming Kodaks main paper developer.

    So try the Foma paper with a European paper developer/formula and the contrast will be more normal.

    Ian
    The OP requested "experiences" with the paper in question, not academic data sheets. Those relative experiences, succinctly given, are mine alone after thousands of prints of every generally available graded fiber-based paper (i.e., Oriental, Kodak, AGFA, Ilford, Kentmere, Forte, Bergger, Slavich, etc.), nearly all developed as stated in Dektol.

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